One Birth Mother’s Perspective on Support

A recent article featured commentary from a birth mother who placed a child in an open adoption.

pencil-paper-my-story-words-near-cup-coffee-blue-wooden-table-51932949The individual experiences of adoptive parents, birth parents, and adoptees are just that – unique and completely individual. Having that said, a birth mother named Jessa was recently interviewed for a piece that asked a host of questions about the decision to place a child for adoption, including what life is like for a birth mother post-placement.

Jessa shared a lot about her experience and her perspective. At one point she was asked what people could do to better support birth mothers. Here was her answer:

“For one, people can stop asking us dumb questions! We get asked questions a lot. ‘Oh I could never do that. How could you ever do that?’ They aren’t being mean — they are well-intentioned. I didn’t grow up saying ‘one day, I want to place a child for adoption.’ They need to understand, it’s not something we wanted to do. We found ourselves in a situation and it’s something we felt was best for our child.
People also need to understand it’s something that involves grief. You can’t just get over it right away.

Finally, people should be respectful. Every woman has the right to choose. I am pro-informed choice. I believe every woman needs to be fully informed on all her choices: abortion, adoption, single parenting, and married parenting. Our job as citizens of the world is not to decide for them. You can say, ‘I know about this topic, here was my experience,’ but don’t force a decision or judgment on us. I know lots of birthmothers who had people from their communities try to influence their decisions. The most important thing is that a woman makes her own informed choice. If you force a woman into any of the decisions, it’s not going to be a good situation.”